Mr Johnson said: “Although the numbers are hard to calculate, they could be more than 200,000 and if the worst happens and President Zelensky and Government is no longer able to function, we must prepare to support them.”
But when Independent Deputy Political Editor Rob Merrick asked the Home Office how the figure was calculated, it gave no details or background information, simply saying the 200,000 is “based on internal estimates”.
The UK Statistics AuthorityCode of Practice says: “Policy, press or ministerial statements referring to regular or ad hoc official statistics should be issued separately from, and contain a prominent link to, the source statistics. The statements should meet basic professional standards of statistical presentation, including accuracy, clarity and impartiality.” The Prime Minister’s unsupported statement is in breach of the UK Statistics Authority’s Code of Practice.
The Government has provided no supporting evidence to support Johnson’s dramatic claim.
We approached Mr Johnson’s office, the Cabinet Office and the No 10 Press Office to give him a chance to comment, but received no response.